Over the years we have seen various Moto GP titles been released and this year we have another title in the series to get to grips, Moto GP 09/10. This time round the title is again published by Capcom but the developer has changed from Milestone to the new studio that’s developed the 09/10 version, Monumental Games. Let’s start off with the looks of the game. Although there is nothing really wrong with the way the game comes across in the graphics department, it’s nothing to be amazed about either. The problem with most of the Moto GP titles that seem to be released over the years is that they seem to have pretty much the same look maybe apart from a slight lick of paint but that’s it. They really do need to go back to the drawing board with this as it really is starting to look very dated. I could have said the same thing a few years ago and it would have still been appropriate but I’ve decided the time to say it is now. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not a horrible, ugly looking title, far from it but it’s just when compared to other titles in the ‘racing’ genre (4 wheels included), it just looks bland and so 2007 and lacks that overall finesse and style that we get with some of the big car racing titles like for instance DIRT or Need For Speed: Shift. I won’t compare Moto GP 09/10’s looks to say a Gran Turismo 5 as lets be fair here, Polyphony Digital has a much bigger budget and resources. This game needs one hell of a facelift as it’s not pretty, far from it in fact.
On to the gameplay elements of the title. Half the trouble with the Moto GP series is that it doesn’t really know if it wants to be a simulation or an arcade racing game. Parts of it try to justify that it wants to be a simulation but for the most part, it’s a pure arcade title. For starters, the handling of the bikes is what you would expect from an arcade racer. It feels like the game is on rails and like I’ve noticed other reviews say, it feels pretty much impossible to crash and this screams ‘Arcade’ racing. There is not a great deal of realism so if you are expecting this from MotoGP 09/10, you might be disappointed. I think this is a major problem for the developer, Monumental Games as I bet that the majority of MotoGP fans would much prefer a simulation title than what they get at the moment with the series sticking to its arcade roots. To me, the whole MotoGP series is stuck in a rut and feels so dated and it needs a revamp in a big way. At this present time, the series feels the same as it did 3 or 4 years ago but with better graphics, updated teams and a few tweaks here and there and let’s be honest in this day and age, that’s not good enough for a racing title. This is meant to be classed as the Gran Turismo of the ‘bike world’ but it feels more like a tamed down version of Road Rash. real life tracks which of course are included in the official game, look very nice and detailed but the sounds of the bikes engines are damn right poor, they really are. These bikes are known for their power but the audio sounds are very bad. Probably one of the worst things about the game in general. Its a very big shame really.
There are good parts of the game as it would be unfair of me to say everything is poor in the game as it isn’t. For example, the career mode is a good little addition that gives MotoGP 09/10, added replay value. You chose a bike class, your own bike and also your team and a colour scheme of your choice for your rider and it basically works by building your teams rep up and in turn, you are rewarded with better bikes etc. It works pretty well it must be said and although there are still room for improvement in this mode, it’s a step in the right direction and hopefully more will be added to the career mode in the version. Another plus point for the game is although it’s not a very realistic adaptation of the MotoGP franchise as a whole, the game is fun to play and with an online mode to support the other modes included, it will keep you coming back for more as there is at least some longevity within the title if you enjoy the arcade style gameplay.
So on to my conclusion of MotoGP 09/10. Although it’s not anywhere near the worst racing title that’s currently on the market, I feel disappointed that the game just hasn’t moved on enough and the fact that it just doesn’t have that buzz of excitement it once had back in the early days. It feels like we are being charged £40 for an update in some ways rather than experiencing a brand new title in the series. If you love bikes, arcade racing and MotoGP in general then you will love this title but if you are after a realistic, 2-wheeled racing title then wait to see what Milestone has to offer with SBK X before splashing your hard earned cash. Overall it’s a title which I had high hopes for but it failed to deliver in so many areas.
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